Microsoft Says It Caught Hackers From China, Russia and Iran Using Its AI Tools

State-backed hackers from Russia, China, and Iran have been using tools from Microsoft-backed OpenAI to hone their skills and trick their targets, according to a report published on Wednesday. Microsoft said in its report it had tracked hacking groups affiliated with Russian military intelligence, Iran’s Revolutionary Guard, and the Chinese and North Korean governments as they tried to perfect their hacking campaigns using large language models. Those computer programs, often called artificial intelligence, draw on massive amounts of text to generate human-sounding responses. The company announced the find as it…

Analysts See Limits to China, Iran, Russia Collaboration With Taliban

washington —  Since the Taliban seized control in August 2021, China, Iran and Russia have been steadily courting Afghanistan’s de facto government for influence. The three countries have kept their embassies open in Kabul and were among the first to hand over Afghan embassies to the Taliban at home. Last month, Moscow, Beijing and Tehran were the most high-profile participants at the Taliban’s first conference on regional cooperation in Kabul. But what are the real prospects of China, Russia, Iran and the Taliban cooperating in the region? Analysts tell VOA…

China Offers Help to Cool Pakistan-Iran Tensions

Regional powerhouse China offered to play a “constructive role” Thursday in easing tensions between Pakistan and Iran, which have reached a boiling point following reciprocal airstrikes across their shared border, leaving civilians dead and raising fears of further escalation. On Thursday, Pakistani airstrikes in Iran’s Sistan and Baluchistan provinces killed several people, including four children and three women, Iranian officials said. Pakistan justified the airstrikes as targeting “hideouts used by terrorist organizations” in Iran, a claim strongly rejected by Tehran. The strikes took place two days after Iran bombed targets…

Iran Seeks Boost as SCO Member but Faces Domestic, Organizational Hurdles, Analysts Say

Iran got a small measure of relief from its isolation by the West this month by joining the Shanghai Cooperation Organization of Eurasian nations. But analysts based in Iran and the U.S. say Tehran faces significant obstacles to benefit from its SCO membership. Tehran became the SCO’s ninth member on July 4, when Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi participated in a virtual SCO summit hosted by India. It was an upgrade from the observer status that Iran had held with the group since 2005. Along with India, the other SCO members…

Lavrov: Iran To Join Shanghai Alliance With China, Russia Next Week

Iran will be formally approved as a member of the regional Shanghai Cooperation Organization with China, Russia and Central Asian countries, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Friday. “At the meeting of heads of state on July 4, the full membership of Iran will be approved,” Lavrov said at the opening of an SCO center in Moscow. Iran has intensified its diplomacy with friends and foes alike in recent months, seeking to reduce its isolation, improve its economy and project strength. SCO membership was already on the cards and Iran…

China Hosts Rare Counterterrorism Talks With Iran, Pakistan

ISLAMABAD —  China, Iran and Pakistan held their first trilateral counterterrorism and regional security consultations on Wednesday in Beijing. “The delegations held detailed discussions on the regional security situation, particularly the threat of terrorism faced by the region,” said a post-meeting statement in Islamabad, which shared no further details. The Pakistani and Chinese foreign ministries said the three nations had decided to institutionalize and hold the meeting regularly. Senior Chinese, Pakistani and Iranian counterterrorism officials, each from their respective foreign ministries, led their teams at Wednesday’s dialogue. Analysts said Pakistan’s…

G7 Foreign Ministers Highlight Concerns About Russia, China

Foreign ministers from the Group of Seven nations condemned Russia’s war in Ukraine and highlighted the need to engage with China to address global challenges as they closed their meetings in Japan on Tuesday. While noting the importance of working with China on issues such as climate change and global health security, the ministers expressed concerns in a joint communique about China’s actions in the East and South China Seas and its stance toward Taiwan. “We reaffirm the importance of peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait as an indispensable…

Before Xi Visit, Russia Says It Held Naval Drills With China and Iran in Arabian Sea

Russia, China and Iran have completed three-way naval exercises in the Arabian Sea that included artillery fire at targets on the sea and in the air, the Russian defense ministry said on Saturday. The exercises, off the Iranian port of Chabahar, took place as Russian President Vladimir Putin prepares to host his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping in Moscow for a three-day state visit starting on Monday. Russia has continued to stage military exercises with partners, especially China, despite the strain on its armed forces from the year-long war in Ukraine,…

Russia Begins Naval Drills With China, Iran

moscow —  Russia said Wednesday it had started naval exercises with China and Iran in the Arabian Sea as it seeks to shore up ties with Beijing and Tehran. The Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement that the trilateral exercises, dubbed the Marine Security Belt 2023, had begun in the vicinity of the Iranian port of Chabahar. The naval part of the drills will take place on Thursday and Friday. Russia will be represented by the Admiral Gorshkov frigate and a medium-sized tanker, the ministry said. During the naval…